The City Council of Kansas City, Missouri simply voted to remove all penalties for cannabis possession from town’s legal code.
Kansas City voters already decriminalized minor hashish possession in 2017 by means of an area poll initiative. Under this measure, the penalty for possessing 35 or fewer grams of weed turned a $25 superb, and possession of over 35 grams turned a $500 superb, with no probability of jail time or a everlasting legal report.
Although the unique decriminalization measure stored minor pot offenders out of jail, it did not cease metropolis cops from persevering with to bust folks for weed. Last month, Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas proposed a new ordinance that might utterly strip all penalties for pot possession off the books. This Thursday, this new measure was permitted by the City Council with a 9-Four vote.
“State and federal law remain clear with marijuana,” mentioned the mayor, according to ABC affiliate KMBC News 9. “The metropolis doesn’t have to be in that enterprise; as an alternative, we stay targeted on how we may also help open doorways to new alternatives and empower folks to make an honest residing.”
The new coverage is barely step one within the mayor’s long-term plan to cut back pointless interactions between the group and metropolis cops. Lucas launched a separate resolution to the council that directs the City Manager to assessment all ordinances that “undermine fairness and equality in the relationship between local government and members of the public, are impermissibly discriminatory, unreasonable, unduly burdensome, or duplicative.”
“One of the ways we improve police-community relations is by eliminating laws that for too long have led to negative interactions, arrests, convictions, and disproportionate rates of incarceration of Black men and Black women,” said Mayor Lucas, KMBC experiences. “Reducing petty offenses – such as municipal marijuana offenses – reduce these negative interactions each day.”
The remainder of Missouri continues to be lagging behind Kansas City’s progressive hashish coverage. Earlier this 12 months, campaigners started amassing signatures to position an adult-use legalization measure on this 12 months’s state election poll, however the COVID-19 pandemic compelled the marketing campaign to suspend its efforts till subsequent 12 months. And aside from proposing a joke invoice that might have required lawmakers to get excessive earlier than each vote, it would not appear to be legislators are prepared to debate hashish reform on a bigger scale.
State voters did approve a poll measure to legalize medical marijuana in 2018, however though 35,000 sufferers have registered for this system, the state has but to open even one single medical pot dispensary.